I used to live in New York City. Well kinda; I spent two summers in college there. Recently, a bunch of my college friends and I traveled back to visit.
My friends who live there have a very Brooklyn lifestyle, which I admit makes me somewhat jealous. They remodeled an old warehouse into their own posh Brooklyn loft. Their little friend/family unit is like a bunch of siblings. They have a weekly rooftop barbecue, which I was delighted to join. The food, the company, and the view were absolutely wonderful.
It was great to see old friends and know that no matter how long it’s been (3 years!) things just fit right back together. Most of us studied abroad in Tuscany together, and we used to play RISK until the wee hours of the morning drunk on local wine. And in true geek fashion, we started it back up again, this time with Clue. Surely my friends are the only folks not at the bar on Saturday night at 3am, but at home having a competitive debate over whether or not Professor Plum with the lead pipe in the Conservatory is the who-done-it.
I was introduced to some new places like the Sheep Meadow in Central Park, the Highline, and a collection of hipster bars and restaurants. And I rediscovered some old favorites: the cosmic scale diagrams at Hayden Planetarium, Union Square, and just wandering… well anywhere. I got a little overconfident about my knowledge of the Subway, and in the same afternoon accidentally visited Queens and Harlem. At least no one else knew I was tourist. It did afford some good people watching, including a whole row of people reading from… real books!
The people, the activity, and the curiosities at every corner had me very excited. I got back praising NYC to my hippie California friends and they said “yeah, it’s fun to visit, but would you want to be an architect there?” I didn’t even have to think. No way. I love working here in San Francisco. Maybe being a real professional is saying I adore this city or that city, but this is MY city.